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The Last Dance
Season 7, episode 17
The last dance123
Air date February 8, 1994
Writer(s) Tom Burkhard
Director John Tracy
Previous Joey's Funny Valentine
Next Kissing Cousins

The Last Dance is episode seventeen of season seven on Full House. It aired originally on February 8, 1994.

Synopsis[]

Jesse's grandfather, Iorgos "Papouli" Katsopolis, is back from Greece for another visit. During this visit he meets Steve, as well as Jesse's two boys, Nicky and Alexander for the first time. The family enjoys having Papouli around, and enjoy when he decides to help make dinner that night, even engaging in a flour-throwing celebration while yelling "Opa!" with Michelle and Stephanie. Jesse starts to intervene but ultimately ends up joining in. Later on, Papouli starts to teach Michelle a Greek dance and invites Jesse to join in but Jesse, having two left feet, declines to do so, opting to clean up the flour celebration from earlier. Papouli also agrees to come to Michelle's school to teach her class the dance the following week.

The next day, while the sun is shining outside the Tanner house, the mood inside is dark and dreary. Everyone is devastated and in tears, as that morning, Danny went to wake Papouli up only to discover that he had died in his sleep from heart failure. Jesse feels that it is a bad dream, but unfortunately, that bad dream is a reality, and it hit them like a ton of bricks. Jesse questions if there was something he could've done to avert the tragedy, but Becky assures him there was nothing he or anyone else could've done for Papouli. Jesse puts on a brave face, and ultimately ops to get busy by notifying the other relatives about Papouli's passing and organizing funeral arrangements, declining assistance from D.J. and Joey, who offer to take care of it. D.J. is hurt by Jesse's refusal, but Becky assures her that him keeping busy is just his way of dealing with the pain.

Michelle cheerfully arrives home from school and her Honeybee meeting, as the rest of the family pulled themselves together. While the older girls, Becky and Joey gather around Michelle, Danny asked her how the Honeybee meeting was as she tells him that it was great and brought a project she made for Papouli. Michelle then asked where Papouli was so she could give her project to him. After Danny tells Michelle that Papouli was not here, she looks at everyone else, especially her old sisters as they tried to keep it together, and realizes something is wrong. Danny breaks the news of Papouli's passing, explaining that his heart simply gave out from old age. Michelle is even more devastated and shocked than they are. So much so, she refuses to accept the news and throws the Honeybee project down on the floor breaking it into pieces, and storms off upstairs in tears. Danny goes upstairs to talk to his "Little Princess" while everyone else continues to tearfully comfort each other with Joey comforting Stephanie and Becky comforting D.J.

Upstairs, as the camera zooms up on the window of her and Stephanie's room with the sad music from earlier replaying, Michelle is crying on her bed when Danny and (later) Stephanie each have a heart-to-heart with her (the latter's chat taking a cue from "Slumber Party" and the former reminding her they're still a family and she can come to him, Jesse, Becky, Joey, Stephanie or D.J. for help.) After Jesse ensures both are doing okay, and his "Little Munchkin" thinks about Joey stuffing a whole doughnut in his mouth (eliciting audience laughter for the first time since the bad news), Stephanie hugs and praises her sister with a brief "Good job, kid" for keeping it together at the moment and throughout the hard time that the family, as a whole, will have to suffer as a result.

Meanwhile, D.J. and Kimmy argue over a pair of sunglasses but Papouli's death helps them realize that their friendship is too important for them to argue over a pair of sunglasses; before his death, Papouli told D.J. a story about two Greek guys who were fighting over a pair of slippers and said even their friendship was more important than that.

After Papouli's death, Danny brings home a boat with Papouli's name inscribed on the lifesaver in his name. Jesse, who announces that he's going to Greece for a few days for Papouli's memorial, loves the boat and says Papouli would've loved it too.

Afterward, Jesse gets a phone call from Michelle's school saying that Michelle was missing from school so Jesse tricks Michelle using a pudding cup and asks her why she is out of school. Michelle says that she could not find her backpack. After a long, heart-to-heart conversation (in which she says that she acted bravely for him), the two recall how much Papouli meant to them. Jesse still blames himself for Papouli's death, although Michelle insists that it wasn't Jesse's fault that Papouli died, he was simply old, and Jesse accepts this. Michelle asks Jesse if it's okay to cry; Jesse says it is, and they hug and cry at the same time.

Jesse takes Michelle back to school where the teacher and class express their sympathy for Papouli's death. Michelle tries to do the Greek dance Papouli promised but she is unable to remember a lot of it. However, Jesse, realizing that doing the Greek dance with Michelle is what Papouli would've wanted, helps his niece by dancing with her (as the audience applauds and the EP credits appear).

Quotes[]

The last dance

[Most of the family is in the kitchen, grieving – most of them in tears – over the loss of Papouli.]
Jesse: [seated, as Becky rubs his shoulder and the back of his head] It's like a bad dream or something.
Becky: [hugs him from behind] I know. I know. [sniffs] But you know, at least Papouli died peacefully [after he gets up, she gives him a proper hug (from the front – as shown in the photo)].
Danny: We all know how much he meant to you, Jess. He meant a lot to us, too.
D.J.: I'm gonna miss him. [...] [to her aunt, after offering to help Jesse with the arrangements, and he goes upstairs] Why won't Uncle Jesse let us help him?
Becky: [comforting her oldest niece] Oh, honey, it's his way of dealing with the pain, you know, by keeping busy.
[Michelle enters through the backdoor, coming home from her Honeybee meeting.] [...]
Michelle: I made this [her project] for Papouli. Where is he?
[Cut to a teary-eyed Stephanie.]
Danny: Michelle, Papouli's not here.
[She looks around at the family members.]
Michelle: Something's wrong.
Danny: Uh, sweetheart, this is, uh, this is not easy to say to you. Uh, this morning after you went to school, we went to wake up Papouli. ...Michelle, he died in his sleep last night.
Michelle: What?
Danny: He was just very old and his heart gave out.
Michelle: [on the verge of tears] No! He's not dead! [She throws down and smashes her project in anger and storms upstairs. Danny follows her, while everyone else continues to comfort each other.]


[Stephanie enters the room. Still a little devastated, shocked, and teary-eyed herself, it's now her turn to have a heart-to-heart with Michelle.]
Stephanie: [takes a breath as she walks over] Hey, Michelle.
Michelle: Hi.
Stephanie: [sits on her roommate's bed] How are you doing?
Michelle: I feel like crying.
Stephanie: Me too. [she sits down on Michelle's bed and comforts her the best she can] But we can't do that in front of Uncle Jesse.
Michelle: Why not?
Stephanie: Because, if he saw us cry, he might start to cry again, too.
Michelle: Uncle Jesse was crying?
Stephanie: He started to. He didn't want me to see, but I did. Michelle, we've gotta be brave for Uncle Jesse, and not let him know that we're sad too.
Michelle: I don't know if I can do that.
Stephanie: You have to.
Michelle: But how can I stop myself from crying?
Stephanie: Just think of something funny, like, uh, when Joey stuffs a whole doughnut in his mouth.
Michelle: Yeah, that always makes me laugh.


Michelle: Papouli was supposed to come to school today, to teach my class the Greek dance.
Jesse: I'm sorry, kiddo.
Michelle: I was afraid that if I went to school and Papouli wasn't there, I'd feel sad.
Jesse: Michelle, it's okay to feel sad.
Michelle: But if I feel sad, I might cry. And then I can't be brave... for you.
Jesse: Michelle, where'd you get the idea you needed to be brave for me?
Michelle: From Stephanie. She said you were so sad, we shouldn't make it worse.
Jesse: Oh sweetheart, Stephanie... she probably thought she was telling you the right thing to do but she was wrong. I'm gonna talk to her about that. Michelle, we should always share our feelings. That's what makes us a family.

Trivia[]

  • This is the second and final appearance of Papouli; the first was in the season four premiere "Greek Week".
  • Before the airing(s) of this episode (summer repeats included), John Stamos gave a "note to parents".
  • In Greek culture, "Opa!" is an expression used during celebrations such as weddings and often accompanies plate smashing.
  • Kimmy's "Beavis and Boat-head" remark is a reference to the title characters of the 1990s MTV animated series Beavis and Butt-Head.
  • Instead of the stills from just this episode, the credits are done over all the stills of Papouli's time with the family from both episodes.
  • The only first-run episode to use the syndicated version of the opening theme song.
  • A promo for this episode dubbed it a "Very Special Full House".[1]
  • The kitchen scene after Papouli dies is one of the saddest, most dramatic scenes of the series (if not the most); and out of the 8 actors (counting the Olsen twins), only 3 had prior experience in dramatic roles (John Stamos, Candace Cameron, and Lori Loughlin). As mentioned above, this scene is one of the few scenes where there was no audience laughter.
  • Steve, Nicky, and Alex do not appear in this episode as they’re only seen at the beginning of the episode when Jesse and Papouli came home.
  • It’s possible that Steve told Kimmy about Papouli's death since she wasn’t there when it happened and DJ probably told him about it.
  • It’s unknown what Nicky and Alex were doing or where they were after Papouli died or if they even know that he was gone, however, Jesse or Becky might’ve told them as they seemed to already know in the next episode.
  • The dance that Michelle, Jesse, and Papouli performed in this episode is called Sirtaki.
  • Jack Kruschen, who played Papouli, was of Russian-Jewish descent, despite his character being Greek.
  • The title is based on the song "Last Dance" written by Paul Jabara and sung by Donna Summer in 1978.
  • Interestingly, Jesse's dad, Nick, is never mentioned even though Papouli was his father. This was more than likely just a production oversight.
  • In a sad irony, Jack Kruschen (who guest-started in this episode) died of Illness-related health issue on April 2, 2002 though his death wasn't reported until May.

Goofs[]

  • During the flour-throwing, one of the times Papouli says "Opa!" his mouth doesn't move. 
  • The amount of flour that lands on Jesse and Michelle changes between shots. Most noticeably, a large amount of it disappears from Michelle's hair shortly after Jesse joins in.
  • When Michelle walks into her classroom, her backpack disappears from her shoulder between shots.
  • While talking about his grandfather. Jesse says he needs to make the arrangements. Michelle later comes home from school. It's been all day and Jesse is just now talking about making the arrangements.
  • All of the adults were at home when Michelle got home from school. It is unknown how she got home since she was only in second grade in this season. Her friend Denise's parents may have brought her home.

References[]

Full House Episodes
Season 1
Our Very First ShowOur Very First NightThe First Day of SchoolThe Return of GrandmaSea CruiseDaddy's HomeKnock Yourself OutJesse's GirlThe Miracle of ThanksgivingJoey's PlaceThe Big Three-OOur Very First PromoSisterly LoveHalf a Love StoryA Pox in Our HouseBut Seriously, FolksDanny's Very First DateJust One of the GuysThe Seven-Month Itch (Part 1)The Seven-Month Itch (Part 2)Mad MoneyD.J. Tanner's Day Off
Season 2
Cutting It CloseTanner vs. GibblerIt's Not My JobD.J.'s Very First HorseJingle HellBeach Boy BingoJoey Gets ToughTriple DateOur Very First Christmas ShowMiddle Age CrazyA Little RomanceFogged InWorking MothersLittle Shop of SweatersPal JoeyBaby LoveEl Problema Grande de D.J.Goodbye Mr. BearBlast From the PastI'm There for You, BabeLuck Be a Lady (Part 1)Luck Be a Lady (Part 2)
Season 3
Tanner's IslandBack to School BluesBreaking Up is Hard to Do (in 22 Minutes)Nerd for a DayGranny TannyStar SearchAnd They Call It Puppy LoveDivorce CourtDr. Dare Rides AgainThe Greatest Birthday on EarthAftershocksJoey & Stacey and... Oh, Yeah, JesseNo More Mr. Dumb GuyMisadventures in BabysittingLust in the DustBye, Bye Birdie13 CandlesMr. EggheadThose Better Not Be the DaysHoney, I Broke the HouseJust Say No WayThree Men and Another BabyFraternity ReunionOur First Telethon
Season 4
Greek WeekCrimes and Michelle's DemeanorThe I.Q. ManSlumber PartyGood News, Bad NewsA Pinch for a PinchViva Las JoeyShape UpOne Last KissTerror in Tanner TownSecret AdmirerDanny in ChargeHappy New Year BabyWorking GirlOld Brown EyesStephanie Gets FramedA Fish Called MartinThe Wedding (Part 1)The Wedding (Part 2)Fuller House (episode)The Hole-in-the-Wall GangStephanie Plays the FieldJoey Goes HollywoodGirls Just Wanna Have FunThe GraduatesRock the Cradle
Season 5
Double TroubleMatchmaker MichelleTake My Sister, PleaseOh Where, Oh Where Has My Little Girl Gone?The King and IThe Legend of Ranger JoeThe Legend of Ranger JoeThe VolunteerGotta DanceHappy Birthday, Babies (Part 1)Happy Birthday, Babies (Part 2)Nicky and/or AlexanderCrushedSpellboundToo Much Monkey BusinessThe Devil Made Me Do ItDriving Miss D.J.Yours, Mine and OursThe Trouble with DannyFive's a CrowdGirls Will Be BoysCaptain Video (Part 1)Captain Video (Part 2)
Season 6
Come Fly With MeThe Long GoodbyeRoad to TokyoRadio DaysLovers and Other TannersEducating JesseTrouble in Twin TownThe Play's the ThingNice Guys Finish FirstI'm Not D.J.Designing MothersA Very Tanner ChristmasThe Dating GameBirthday BluesBe True to Your PreschoolThe Heartbreak KidSilence is Not GoldenPlease Don't Touch the DinosaurSubterranean Graduation BluesGrand Gift AutoRoom for One MoreProm NightThe House Meets the Mouse (Part 1)The House Meets the Mouse (Part 2)
Season 7
It Was a Dark and Stormy NightThe ApartmentWrong-Way TannerTough LoveFast FriendsSmash Club: The Next GenerationHigh AnxietyAnother Opening, Another No ShowThe Day of the RhinoThe Prying GameThe Bicycle ThiefSupport Your Local ParentsThe Perfect CoupleIs It True About Stephanie?The TestJoey's Funny ValentineThe Last DanceKissing CousinsLove on the RocksMichelle a la CarteBe Your Own Best FriendA Date with FateToo Little Richard Too LateA House Divided
Season 8
Comet's Excellent AdventureBreaking AwayMaking Out is Hard to DoI've Got a SecretTo Joey, With LoveYou Pet It, You Bought ItOn the Road AgainClaire and Present DangerStephanie's Wild RideUnder the InfluenceArrest Ye Merry GentlemenD.J.'s ChoiceThe ProducerSuper Bowl Fun DayMy Left and Right FootAir JesseDateless in San FranciscoWe Got the BeatTaking the PlungeUp on the RoofLeap of FaithAll Stood UpMichelle Rides Again (Part 1)Michelle Rides Again (Part 2)
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